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Digital Archive International History Declassified

December 15, 1957

ANNOUNCEMENT FROM THE CHINESE GOVERNMENT SUPPORTING THE SOVIET UNION'S SUGGESTION FOR PEACE

This document was made possible with support from the Henry Luce Foundation

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    The Chinese Government endorses a proposal by the Soviet Union for the USSR, the US, and the UK to halt nuclear weapons tests.
    "Announcement from the Chinese Government Supporting the Soviet Union's Suggestion for Peace," December 15, 1957, History and Public Policy Program Digital Archive, PRC FMA 109-00795-01, 1-3. Translated by Charles Kraus. https://digitalarchive.wilsoncenter.org/document/144969
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[Handwritten text on header of page one]

Sent to Liu [Shaoqi], Deng [Xiaoping], [one illegible crossed out name] and Zhu [De] for review. [Translator’s note—the names of Liu, Deng, and Zhu are circled, indicated they read and approved the document.]

Chen Yi

Peng Zhen -- [he’s] not in Beijing

Urgent Document

15/12 [December 15, 1957]

Vice Minister Zhang has reviewed [the document] and cabled it to the Chairman [Mao Zedong]. The Premier [Zhou Enlai] has approved it.

Announcement from the Chinese Government Supporting the Soviet Union's Suggestion for Peace

(December 1957)

On December 10, 1957, the Government of the Soviet Union proposed to four Western countries (the United States, the United Kingdom, France, and West Germany) a halt in nuclear test explosions, that nuclear weapons not be stationed inside of German territory, and that the member states of the Warsaw Pact and the member states of NATO sign a mutual non-aggression agreement. The Soviet Government also put forward a series of positive proposals for major issues such as guaranteeing the independence and peace of countries in the Middle and Near East, ceasing hostile propaganda, carrying out economic and cultural exchanges between East and West, and direct meetings between the leaders of the great powers. These major steps taken by the Soviet Government are intended to resolve all disarmament issues, ease international tensions and safeguard word peace. The Chinese Government and the Chinese people completely approve of and warmly support the Soviet Government’s proposals.

Recently, the American ruling clique has used the Soviet Union’s launching of an Earth satellite [Sputnik 1] as an excuse to intensify and expand its war armaments. They are not only attempting to mobilize the resources of all member countries of NATO, strengthen the armed forces, and openly station atomic and hydrogen weapons in Western Europe, but they are also hatching up [a plan] for NATO, the Manila Pact, the Baghdad Pact, and other aggressive groups to join together in some form in order to prepare for a total war. This is exacerbating international tensions and is endangering the peace of Europe and the world.

The Earth satellite launched by the Soviet people is proof of the superiority of the socialist system. It does not threaten any single person. Moreover, the Soviet Union, China, and all other socialist nations, as firm advocates of peaceful coexistence, are not preparing to use our own superiority to threaten others. We advocate for peaceful coexistence and peaceful competition among countries of different social system. The excuses of the American ruling clique are utterly absurd.

At the same time, it can also be seen that, by behaving this way, the American ruling clique and its followers are not strengthening the position of the United States, nor are they bringing any benefits to the followers of the US. The United States is currently propagating talk of so-called “interdependence” within its alliances. In fact, the United States is not pursuing dependence on its alliances; rather it wants its alliances to be dependent on the United States. First and foremost, the US wants in its hands complete control over all NATO member countries. The result is that these countries will have to sacrifice their independence for a strategic plan that does not fit their own national interests, and by establishing foreign military bases on their territory, they will suffer and be under threat. Now it is time for them to calmly consider [this reality] and make a wise choice.

The Soviet Union’s proposals fully demonstrate the warm desires for peace among the Soviet Union and all other socialist countries. They are in complete accord with the vital interests of the world’s peoples. These proposals have already garnered friendly responses and warm support from many countries. If these proposals can be accepted and implemented by the relevant countries, they will open up a broad path toward the lofty causes of resolving all disarmament issues, easing international tensions, and safeguarding world peace. The Chinese Government warmly supports these proposals for peace from the Soviet Government, and hopes that these significant recommendations be given serious consideration.